Parks become an important part of your life when you are like me and have a bunch of kids to entertain. Of the parks I have visited Packer Park rates as one of the better destinations in Melbourne's inner east. Why Packer Park? Well for starters, how many parks do you know that boast a public velodrome? You heard right - a velodrome. Before visiting the park put you kids' bikes in the car and don't forget your own - you will realise that riding your bike fast in a circle is surprisingly enjoyable activity.
The play area for the kids is the usual prefabricated plastic maze with mandatory ladders, slides and climbing frames. There is also a see-saw and a couple of swings. To its credit, the play area is relatively well done, has a wheel chair access and will reliably entertain the little ones for at least half an hour.
Another notable feature of this park is the curious climbing frame made of thick ropes and trampoline-like jumping pads. Not sure what the technical term for this contraption is but my kids absolutely loved it. For those less adventurously-minded there are the usual amenities including an electric barbecue, a shaded picnic area and a sporting oval.
The last thing to mention is that in a drive for originality the park designers incorporated a man-made 'frog pond' complete with a sculptured tadpole-to-frog exhibit. For a few years now the ongoing drought meant that the pod has remained pitifully empty but with the recent rains the pond has filled up (no frogs yet) and offers a nice shady spot to contemplate at and watch the kids having fun.